Homophobic bullying ‘a daily nightmare’

for over half of Scotland’s school pupils

 Pioneering research reveals serious concerns about homophobic language

 A quarter of gay young Scots attempt suicide

New research carried out by the University of Cambridge for Stonewall Scotland’s School Report Scotland 2012 has found that 52 per cent of lesbian, gay and bisexual pupils in Scottish secondary schools experience homophobic bullying. The findings are specific to the 158 lesbian, gay and bisexual young Scots who took part in a national survey of 1,614 young people.  The research also found that a quarter (26 per cent) of gay young Scots have attempted to take their own life, and more than half (54 per cent) deliberately harm themselves.

The School Report Scotland 2012 reveals that 99 per cent of gay young people hear homophobic language – like ‘that’s so gay’ and ‘you’re so gay’.  Less than a third (31 per cent) of lesbian, gay and bisexual pupils say their school responds quickly to homophobic bullying behaviour when it occurs and less than three in five (57 per cent) lesbian, gay and bisexual pupils in Scotland report that their schools say homophobic bullying is wrong.

Stonewall Scotland Director, Colin Macfarlane said: ‘The mark of a society is how it treats its young people and so it’s unacceptable that over half of gay young Scots face a daily nightmare of homophobic bullying, and deeply worrying that many schools and teachers still fail to challenge it effectively.  At a time when policy makers look for ways to boost attainment and raise aspiration it is deeply disturbing that half of lesbian, gay and bisexual young Scots say they don’t feel that they are achieving their best at school.  We won’t rest until every single gay young person in this country can walk through their school gates every morning without fear of being bullied just because of the way they were born.’

Download the full report here.

Enquiries: Colin Macfarlane 07870 650 662/Catherine Somerville 0131 474 8019 



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For media enquiries in the first instance please contact Stonewall Scotland on 0131 474 8019 or email info@stonewallscotland.org.uk. If you have an out of office media enquiry please call 07870 650 662.